Master of Peace and Conflict Studies

The information on this page applies to future students. Current students should refer to their faculty handbooks for course information.

The Master of Peace and Conflict Studies will give you a critical understanding of the causes of conflict and violence, and the means of attaining peace, justice and human rights on a local and global scale. Informed by the latest research, this program focuses on developing the theoretical understanding and practical skills that can be applied to the increasingly diverse field of peace and conflict studies.

The course includes three core units of study, at least three core electives, and a capstone experience which can take the form of a dissertation, internship or advocacy project. As well as gaining a core body of knowledge in the field, you will also be able to choose from a range or electives or opt to complete a minor specialisation, selected from areas such as development studies, human rights, political economy, international relations, security studies, area studies or social science policy, theory and methods.

The program provides the opportunity to study with expert commentators and practitioners in nonviolence, community mediation, human rights, the United Nations, faith-based peacebuilding, and the psychology of peace.

Many units of study are offered in the evening or in intensive teaching mode, making it easier for students in Sydney to complete the course while working full time. A number of units are also taught online each semester. Students who live and work in other countries or states of Australia are able to complete the course via a combination of distance learning and intensive face‑to‑face teaching in Sydney.

Course outline

For an up-to-date list of units of study for this degree, please refer to the online postgraduate handbook.

Study plan


The MPACS requires the satisfactory completion of :

(a) a minimum of 18 credit points from core units of study;

(b) a minimum of 18 credit points from core electives; and

(c) a maximum of 24 credit points from elective units of study which can include an optional minor as listed in the unit of study table. With the permission of the Degree Coordinator a maximum of 12 credit points of elective units can be taken from units of study outside those listed in the Peace and Conflict Studies subject area of the Postgraduate Unit of Study Table, including a maximum of 6 credit points from units of study offered by other faculties; and

(d) 12 credit points from capstone units of study.

Embedded courses

Further course information

Progression rules

Under normal progression, a student shall undertake and successfully complete all units of study to the value of 24 credit points per semester as prescribed for the course. Candidates must maintain a credit average result or above, normally over at least the first 4 units of study, in order to qualify for admission to the dissertation units of study. Students are required to attend all lectures, tutorials and other activities prescribed for their units of study.

Course outcomes and further study

Graduate opportunities

Peace and Conflict Studies is an interdisciplinary program which provides students with the knowledge and practical skills for a range of careers associated with conflict resolution, international peace and security, social justice, human rights, and community and international development.

Graduates of Peace and Conflict Studies work for the United Nations, international non-government organisations, local community organisations, universities and government departments, and as peace-builders, community workers, diplomats, academics, conflict resolution practitioners and researchers.

Admission

Admission requirements

Admission to candidature for the Master of Peace and Conflict Studies requires:

(a) a bachelor’s degree with a minimum credit (65 percent) average calculated over the whole degree, from the University of Sydney, with a major in the humanities or social sciences; or an equivalent qualification or

(a) completion of the requirements for the embedded Graduate Certificate or Graduate Diploma in Peace and Conflict Studies with a minimum credit (65 percent) average, or an equivalent qualification.

Upgrade is possible from a Grad Cert to a Grad Dip or Masters in the embedded degree.

Upgrade is possible for a Grad Dip to Masters in the embedded degree.

How to apply

Domestic students

How to apply

Australian citizens, permanent residents, New Zealand citizens, and holders of a permanent humanitarian visa, apply through the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences - click on the 'Apply now' icon on this page to proceed with your application.

International students

How to apply

Overseas applicants may apply:

(i) directly to the University via the International Office. Further information on applications and English language requirements and support services for international students is available on the International Office website; or

(ii) through a University overseas representative (education agent).

Important note:

The Master of Peace and Conflict Studies combined distance learning and intensive face-to-face delivery mode is not CRICOS registered and is therefore not available to international students on a student visa who come to Sydney to study on shore. Students wishing to undertake the course in this delivery mode should apply directly to the university by the choosing the Distance Education from the drop-down menu under the International applicants section and follow the prompts to apply for the Distance Learning program. Please consult the Australian High Commission for advice about the appropriate visa to come to Sydney to undertake a unit or units of study.

The MPACS course is also offered as an onshore course (CRICOS registered) for international students on a student visa who must apply through the International Office for admission.

Fee disclaimer

Domestic students

Annual review for postgraduate student contribution amount

Importantly, student contribution amounts are subject to annual review by the University, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study (subject to a Commonwealth specified cap), effective at the start of each calendar year.

Postgraduate Domestic Tuition Fee

This 2015, tuition fee for a domestic postgraduate student represents the fee that is payable by you in the calendar year you commence your course, commencing in 2014 for a standard annual full time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). If your study load is more or less than the 1.0 EFTSL your fee will differ.

Annual review for postgraduate domestic tuition fee

Importantly, tuition fees are subject to annual review by the University, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study, effective at the start of each calendar year.

Additional incidental fees

For some courses there are incidental fees additional to the student contribution and/or course fee. Some of those fees are significant, for example, faculty-specific materials, tools, protected clothing and equipment. For further information about these additional incidental fees, please visit the University's Future Students' website.

Potential for inaccuracy

Whilst every reasonable effort has been made to include correct and up to date information in this prospectus, you are also advised to consult directly with the Student Centre for domestic students or the International Office for international students so that they can provide you with specific and up to date information about those fees.

The academic requirements that are displayed are applicable to currently available courses only, and are updated annually in October and may be changed without notice. The Faculty Handbook and the University of Sydney Calendar are the official legal source of information relating to study at the University of Sydney, and you are referred to those documents

Please note that if you are classified by the University as a Research Training Scheme student in accordance with the Other Grants Guidelines (Research) 2010, you will be exempt from the payment of any SCA or tuition fees for courses undertaken as part of a Research Masters degree and Research Doctoral degree. More information about your eligibility for this Scheme is available here.

International students

International tuition fees for postgraduate students

This 2015, tuition fee for international postgraduate students represents the fees that are payable by you in the calendar year you commence your course, commencing in 2015, for a standard annual full time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). If your study load is more or less than the 1.0 EFTSL your fee will differ.

Annual review

Importantly, tuition fees are subject to annual review, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study, effective at the start of each calendar year.

Additional incidental fees and health insurance

For some courses there are incidental fees additional to the tuition fees. Some of those fees are significant, for example, faculty-specific materials, tools, protected clothing, and equipment. The University's Future Students' webpage has further information about these additional incidental fees for postgraduate coursework students and postgraduate research students.

In addition to the fees indicated here for the course of study, International Students studying on an Australian Student Visa must have appropriate health insurance for the duration of their studies on a Student Visa through an approved provider of the Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) scheme. This is a requirement of the Australian Government, unless otherwise exempted by the Government.

Potential for inaccuracy

Whilst every reasonable effort has been made to include correct and up to date information here, you are also advised to consult directly with the Student Centre for domestic students or the International Office for international students so that they can provide you with specific and up to date information about those fees.